February 16, 2012

Remembering Pamela Colman-Smith

Pamela Colman-Smith was born on February 16th, 1878 and passed on September 19th, 1951.

She was an artist, illustrator, writer, and editor. She edited the short-lived magazine The Green Sheaf that included material from Yeats. Yeats introduced her to the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. There she met A.E. Waite. Her collaboration with Waite inspired her most famous and enduring work -- the Waite-Smith Tarot. That work, republished and recolored became know as the Rider-Waite Tarot, is the standard for most tarot readers’ collections.

I, like many interested in the occult and alternate spirituality, studied and practiced the Tarot. Of course, I began with the Rider-Waite Tarot. I’ll admit, I didn’t pay a lot of attention to the artist/illustrator of the work in my early learning. It was several years later, and familiarity with many more Tarot Decks, that I grew to really appreciate the work that Pamela Colman-Smith did. Her work had endured like few others and is the standard by which all other A.E. Waite based tarot cards are judged against. Although I’ve grown to use another deck when I do tarot readings, I still can use the Pamela Coleman-Smith drawn decks.

Today, on the 134th anniversary of her birth, I remember Pamela Colman-Smith and give thanks to her as an Ancestor.

1 comment:

ArtSings1946 said...

Thank you for this post. Something to think about.

Happiness to all.